A horse and its teen rider were struck by a driver evading police in Houston. Police had tried to conduct a traffic stop when the driver fled, throwing narcotics out of the vehicle as he did so. He then ran a stop sign and struck the horse and rider.
Police eventually apprehended the driver after he fled to a nearby apartment complex. The 17 year old kid on the horse was ok, thankfully, but the 12 year old horse, named Blackjack, had to be euthanized on scene.
This makes me so mad, on so many levels. First of all, if you're transporting narcotics, running isn't going to get you anywhere. All it's going to get you is more charges, such as evading arrest, reckless endangerment, destruction of public or private property if you hit anything, not to mention any manslaughter or homicide charges if you hit and kill any people.
Second of all, this is Texas. People still do actually ride horses in developed areas and along public roads. In fact, farm vehicles actually have the right-of-way on designated "Farm to Market" roads. (I don't think a horse counts as a "vehicle," but it's definitely more likely that you'll see a rider, or a group of riders, on one of these roads). I mean, riders aren't everywhere, it's not like you'll see one every day, but they are still allowed everywhere. There's even a guy who is known to ride into his favorite watering hole that's smack dab in the middle of downtown Austin.
That horse was 12 years old. I don't know if that kid's family owned it since it was a foal, but they probably at least owned it for a few years. And 12 is still relatively young for a horse. And horses are smart, compassionate creatures, with distinctive personalities. That horse was probably one of that kid's best friends. And that horse definitely saved his rider's life. Being mounted put that kid at a height where that asshat in the car couldn't hit him.
Grrrrrr. Sorry, I don't really know what I'm trying to say. This story just hit a nerve, I guess. And I feel really bad that the poor horse was there in agony until the local livestock unit arrived to put it down. And I feel bad for that poor kid, watching one of his friends suffering, and having to consent to the euthanasia. That's totally not fucking cool.
Anyway, here's a link to the Houston Chronicle story: